2007 AVCA ALL-DISTRICT (HONORABLE MENTION)
2007 FIRST TEAM ALL-WAC
2007 WAC ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM
2007 ACADEMIC ALL-WAC
2006 AVCA ALL-AMERICAN (HONORABLE MENTION)
2006 FIRST TEAM ALL-WAC
2006 WAC ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM
WAC PLAYER OF THE WEEK
2005 WAC FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR
2005 SECOND TEAM ALL-WAC
2005 All-WAC FRESHMAN TEAM
2005 ALL-WAC TOURNAMENT TEAM
2005 ACADEMIC ALL-WAC TEAM
TWO-TIME WAC PLAYER OF THE WEEK
2007 (JUNIOR): Amber Simpson continued to succeed as a middle hitter for NMSU in 2007 as she earned 2007 AVCA All-District, 2007 first team All-WAC and 2007 WAC All-Tournament team honors. She ranked second in the conference in hitting percentage at .345 and was ninth in the blocks with an average of 1.14 per game. Simpson played in all 32 matches for the Aggies in 2007 and finished the year with 324 kills and was second on the team in total blocks with 130. On 12 different occasions she registered at least a .400 hitting percentage and had the second highest percentage on the team when she hit .625 against San Jose State (11/16). Simpson also had at least five blocks in 11 matches and worked hard against Idaho (9/29) to tie her career-high of 13 blocks. She posted double-digit kill figures 16 times in 2007 and her first double-digit kill performance in the season opener versus Albany (8/24) when she recorded 11 kills in a 3-0 win. She followed that with a 17 kill showing and added five blocks against UC Davis (8/25) to go with a hitting percentage of .467 before she hit .538 against Northern Arizona that same day to help the Aggies win the NAU Invitational Title. She showed signs of dominance against Houston (9/2) when she tallied 16 kills with a .480 hitting percentage. Simpson would not be denied against I-25 rival New Mexico (9/4) two days later when she led the Aggies to a 3-1 victory with 15 kills, a .464 hitting percentage and five blocks. She hit .464 for the second consecutive match when she collected a season-high 18 kills to help the Aggies beat Louisville (9/7) 3-2. In conference matches, Simpson hit .292 and ranked fifth in the WAC in that category. She helped the Aggies sweep Nevada (9/15) in Reno, Nev. as she hit .412 in the match. Simpson continued to be a force defensively when she recorded six blocks against Utah State (9/20), five against Hawai’i (9/22), a career-high 13 blocks against Idaho (9/29) and five more blocks against Utah (10/3). Simpson tallied 15 kills in a five-game victory over Nevada (10/18) and followed that with 11 kills, a .556 hitting percentage and five blocks in a sweep of San Jose State (10/20). Simpson registered 10 kills and hit .400 to help the Aggies sweep I-10 rivals UTEP (10/30). She returned back to conference play and had eight kills with a .636 hitting percentage against Boise State (11/1) before she recorded 10 kills and seven blocks in a three-game victory over Idaho (11/3) in Moscow, Idaho. In the semifinals of the WAC Tournament versus San Jose State (11/16), Simpson posted 15 kills and had a .625 hitting percentage, second best on the team in 2007, while she added four blocks. Simpson finished the season with seven blocks in the WAC Tournament Final against Hawai’i (11/17) and seven in the first round of the NCAA Tournament versus LSU (11/30).
2006 (REDSHIRT SOPHOMORE): Simpson was a force as a middle hitter for the Aggies in 2006. She led the team and the WAC with a .387 hitting percentage, which ranked No. 18 in the NCAA. That mark also set the NMSU single-season record for hitting percentage. Simpson became only the fourth player in Aggie history to earn AVCA All-American honors when she was named to the honorable mention list with Kim Oguh. Simpson’s dominating presence also earned her first team All-WAC and WAC All-Tournament Team honors. She was a consistent figure in the middle and ranked second on the team in kills (397) kills per game (3.15), total blocks (156) and blocks per game (1.24). Simpson also posted 58 digs, 11 assists and 43 service aces, which placed third on the squad. In only her second season of collegiate competition, Simpson began 2006 earning all-tournament team honors at the UTEP/Sun Bowl Invitational. Against Texas Tech (8/26), she posted a season-high 16 kills with a .400 hitting percentage and seven blocks in a five-game victory. The following weekend versus Florida A&M (9/2), she had a career-high .778 hitting percentage in a three-game sweep. In the Aggies tournament, the Hilton Las Cruces Classic, Simpson had a career-high 21 kills in the opening match against Wyoming (9/7). She also collected a career-high five digs in the tournament finale versus Akron (9/9) en route to earning most valuable player honors. Simpson’s performance also earned her the Aggies first WAC Player of the Week honor (9/11). At the Jackrabbit Invitational in Brookings, S.D, Simpson had a career-high three aces and a match-high nine kills in the Aggies opening match against Lamar (9/15). She also had double-digit kill performances with 12 versus tournament host South Dakota State (9/15) and 13 against North Dakota State (9/16). In all, Simpson recorded 23 double-digit kill performances in 2006. Against Boise State (9/23), Simpson posted 13 kills and a .632 hitting percentage and tied her career high mark in aces with three in the opening weekend of WAC play. Simpson had a three-match span of double-figure kill totals beginning with 14 at Nevada (9/30). Against UTEP (10/4), she collected 16 kills and a .480 hitting percentage. Simpson also had 15 kills at Louisiana Tech (10/6). Defensively, Simpson set a season-high mark for blocks with nine at Boise State (11/2). In the Aggies return to the Pan American Center, Simpson posted 14 kills versus Fresno State (11/16), which started a five-match span of double-digit kill performances. She followed that showing with 10 kills against San Jose State in the regular season finale (11/18). In the quarterfinal match of the WAC Tournament in Reno, Nev., versus Boise State (11/22), Simpson recorded 19 kills. Against Idaho (11/23) in the semifinals, she had a match-high 11 kills with a .625 hitting percentage. In the WAC Tournament Championship match versus Hawai’i (11/24), Simpson tallied 12 kills.
SUMMER 2006: Simpson played on the All-Frosh USA Select Team, which traveled to Argentina to participate in a series of exhibition matches with the Argentina National Team program. Simpson was joined on the team by the likes of Utah setter Shannon Krug and outside hitter Sarah Munoz out of Virginia Tech. Other team members included Cincinnati's Jessica Elley and Lindsey Peterson. The team was coached by Cincinnati head coach Reed Sunahara. This is the sixth year that USA Volleyball has recognized a trip of this nature organized and managed by Bring It Promotions.
2005 (REDSHIRT FRESHMAN): After redshirting in 2004, Simpson burst onto the scene in 2005 and quickly became one of the best first-year players in Aggie volleyball history. In her first season of collegiate volleyball, Simpson was named the WAC Freshman of the Year, second team All-WAC and to the All-WAC Freshman Team. She finished the season ranked sixth in the conference in hitting percentage (.309) and second in the league in blocks per game (1.35). In conference play, Simpson finished ninth in the WAC in hitting percentage (.301) and third in blocks per game (1.32). Simpson was also a two-time WAC Player of the Week, the most of any Aggie. Simpson finished the season with 11 double-figure kill matches while leading the team in kills three times. She finished fourth on the team in kills (249) and kills per game (2.54). Simpson hit at least .400 on 10 different occasions, including when she set the Aggies' four-game match record for hitting percentage at .720 against Fresno State in the WAC home opener (9/29). On the defensive end, Simpson was even better as she led the Aggies in total blocks (132) and blocks per game (1.35). Simpson currently ranked third on the NMSU single-season list for block assists (118) and fourth on the single-season blocks per game list (1.35). Simpson was also a presence in the classroom as she was named Academic All-WAC as redshirt freshman. At the Hilton Las Cruces Classic, Simpson led the Aggies to the tournament title after averaging 8.5 kills and 5.5 total blocks in wins over Texas-Pan American (9/2) and Cincinnati (9/3). In the tournament opener versus UTPA, Simpson posted 10 kills and added eight total blocks in the three-game sweep. At Wyoming (9/17), Simpson recorded her second double-digit kill match of the season with 11 kills while hitting .588 in a three-game win over the Cowgirls. A week later in the WAC opener at Nevada (9/24), Simpson again had 11 kills to go along with four total blocks in a tough five-game loss. Against Fresno State (9/29), Simpson registered a career-high 18 kills and added seven total blocks in a four-game victory. In her first match against Hawai'i (10/1), Simpson posted 10 kills and six total blocks in a near upset of the nationally ranked Rainbow Wahine. Simpson earned her first WAC Player of the Week award (10/17) after averaging 11.5 kills and four total blocks in wins at Fresno State (10/13) and San Jose State (10/15). Against the Spartans, Simpson led the Aggies with 13 kills while hitting .750 with just one error. At Boise State (10/29), Simpson was again a force as she finished with 15 kills and four total blocks while hitting .429 with just three errors. Over the last nine matches of the season, Simpson became a dominate force defensively as she posted four or more total blocks in every match down the stretch. Simpson earned her second WAC Player of the Week award (11/7) after averaging 12 kills and nine total blocks in wins over Nevada and San Jose State. In a four-game victory over the Wolf Pack (11/3), Simpson recorded a career-best 13 total blocks while adding nine kills. Against the Spartans (11/5), Simpson turned on the offense as she finished with 15 kills and hit .481 with just two errors. Two days later, she had 10 kills and eight total blocks in a four-game win over New Mexico in Albuquerque. In her second match against Hawai'i, Simpson finished with 12 kills and six total blocks as the Aggies took the Rainbow Wahine to five games for the second time. In her first WAC Tournament, Simpson was named to the All-WAC Tournament team after averaging 10.5 kills and six total blocks. In the semifinal loss to Utah State, Simpson finished with 13 kills and eight total blocks while NMSU held Utah State to a .150 hitting percentage.
2004 (FRESHMAN): Simpson did not play due to redshirting the 2004 season.
HIGH SCHOOL: Simpson is a 2004 graduate of Quincy High School in Quincy, Ill., and played for head coach Danielle Edgar. As a senior, she recorded a .453 hitting percentage while racking up 297 kills and 204 total blocks, including 132 block assists and 72 solo blocks. She was named to three all-tournament teams (Pekin, Quincy, Quincy Earlybird) in 2003. Simpson was the team leader in kills and blocks in 2003 while earning first team All-Western Big 6 Conference and conference all-academic team honors. She was the Quincy Herald Whig Volleyball Player of the Year and earned all-state honorable mention honors during her senior campaign. She also played for the Midwest Magic 18's volleyball team in the Iowa Region under head coach Teri Paul.
PERSONAL: Amber Simpson was born in Quincy, Ill. and is the daughter of Errol and Sherlene Simpson. She is majoring in biology.